Attain Fertility Publishes Study During National Infertility Awareness Week®:
(Purchase, NY) – The old adage “what you don’t know can’t hurt you” needs to be turned around. According to the Fertility Patient Study conducted by Attain Fertility®, what you don’t know can mean the difference between successfully conceiving a child or not.
“We realized that the information-gathering process for fertility patients was changing and that there were many different outlets for them to go to for information. We felt it was our obligation to find out more about how this group makes decisions regarding timing and treatment, so that we could better provide them the information they seek,” explained Andrew Mintz, President of Attain Fertility Centers.
The 2010 Fertility Patient Study collected information from over 7,200 consumers, making it one of the largest and most significant studies of its kind.
One of the most revealing facts the Study brought to light was that 30% of respondents waited two years or more before seeking the expertise of a fertility specialist and 63% based their information on self-diagnosis rather than a diagnosis from a specialist. Regardless the underlying reason for a person’s infertility, age also plays a key role in a person’s ability to become pregnant. The longer a woman waits to seek help from a reproductive endocrinologist or fertility specialist, the more difficult it will be for her to conceive.
“This information tells us that we need to do a better job of communicating with consumers, stressing the need for them to address their fertility issues sooner rather than later,” Mintz said.
The Study also revealed that the 4 key factors keeping people from seeking the care of a specialist are:
- Concern they can’t afford treatment
- Fear of what they might find out about their fertility health
- Lack of insurance coverage
- Feeling overwhelmed
Fertility centers are particularly sensitive to those who are fearful of finding out that they have fertility issues and those who feel overwhelmed. Most centers are designed to help patients navigate the process in a nurturing environment providing support and guidance from the moment a patient walks through the door.
The data clearly indicates there is a lack of education about the cost of treatment. People hear “infertility,” think IVF (in vitro fertilization), and conclude that it will be cost-prohibitive. In fact, IVF accounts for less than 5 percent of all infertility treatments in the United States. Most fertility patients undergo much more affordable treatments. In addition, many people don’t realize that many insurance companies will cover the cost of diagnosis – underlying the fact that they should at the least get checked out.
“Concern about the cost of treatment is definitely a barrier for many people diagnosed with infertility,” said Barbara Collura, Executive Director of RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association, a non-profit organization devoted to improving the lives of women and men living with infertility. “Providing accurate, accessible, useful information about all family-building options is a core part of our mission.”
The Study also concluded that over 80% of consumers use the internet when researching fertility clinics and making decisions about their fertility treatment. Therefore, it is imperative to not only have an online presence for the consumer, but to make sure that the platform provides up-to-date information that encourages and supports proactive behavior when it comes to reproductive health.
“We want people to have the best information and care so that they have the best shot at having a healthy family,” Mintz continued. To that end Attain Fertility has developed a number of tools for both Attain Fertility network fertility clinics and potential patients to use to gain access to timely information and expert care including:
- Facebook (Attain Fertility currently has over 11,300 ‘Fans’)
- Educational videos on a dedicated YouTube channel
- Blog posts with guest ‘expert’ bloggers
- The latest fertility information via Twitter
- An informational website with award-winning content that provides a one-stop location for education, up-to-the-minute news and a network fertility center locator
With the data from the study, Attain Fertility hopes to provide a resource for patients that will allow them to make well-informed decisions. It also allows Attain Fertility to become an expert resource for health care providers and those who report on health care and fertility issues.